Dublin tan queen to work her magic on Oscar hopefuls

THIS Dublin fake tan entrepreneur is off to the Oscars to top-up the tans of Hollywood A-listers.

Marissa Carter (30), the business dynamo behind the multi-million euro Cocoa Brown, was contacted by the Oscar's top gifting-suite to tend to the tanning needs of nominees.

"I'm just so excited I can't contain myself," Ms Carter told the Herald.

The stars got lavish goodie bags in the past but now they're pampered and spoiled for the three days running up the world's biggest movie awards in the penthouse of the Beverly Hilton.

The Dublin businesswoman will be the first ever to set up shop at the TMG Pre-Oscar Luxury Gifting Suite.

Hollywood heavyweights Sean Penn, Al Pacino and Madonna have used the suite before.

Ms Carter has been told to expect 200-plus guests and only Oscar ticket-holders can gain entry.

"I feel like Dorothy and I'll wake up from it," said Ms Carter.

Cocoa Brown was spotted in Dublin airport by a friend of the suite's organiser. The tan made itself to America where the organiser saw the pink bottle and asked her friend could she try it, explained Ms Carter.

She then started receiving emails inviting her to be the only provider of fake tan to this year's Oscar nominees, but Ms Carter ignored them at first thinking they were spam.

The highly sought-after slots cannot be bought, begged for or borrowed -- it's on an invite-only basis. St Tropez previously provided the tanning to the stars before Cocoa Brown came on board.

NEGOTIATIONS

Ms Carter -- who only launched her business in November 2012 -- already has her products stocked in thousands of pharmacies in Ireland and the UK. And she sells three bottles of tan a minute on Aer Lingus flights. She's also in negotiations to launch in the US.

The busy wife and mum-of-one says 2013 was whirlwind year for her and having a turnover of several million the business "is a dream come true".

She also said that the fake tan business is about to explode in the US with "Americans becoming aware of the ageing effects of the sun".

With a staff of only four, Marissa doesn't plan on slowing down for 2014.

"We're going to make a mark in the US," the Dubliner said.

hnews@herald.ie

Joyce Fegan

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